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Abbey helps smooth the way for first-timers

Abbey National has helped to publish a Rough Guide to getting a foot on the property ladder.

The Rough Guide to Buying Your First Home warns first-time buyers about the pitfalls of the housebuying process. It covers everything from planning finances to dealing with estate agents and solicitors.

Abbey says Easter typically heralds the start of the homebuying season and it will give a free guide to any first-time buyer who completes an initial interview with one of its mortgage advisers.

The 100-page guide covers 10 main topics, including dream homes, estate agents, viewing and making an offer, mortgages, lawyers, surveyors and financial advisers, insurance, cutting costs, packing, moving and a list of key contacts.

The lender says Rough Guides are not just for globetrotting. They now cover such diverse topics as pregnancy, cult TV and even Elvis Presley.

Head of mortgage marketing Guy Aldwinckle says: “Everyone has heard the first-time buyers&#39 horror stories that can be fraught with anxiety and stress. This guide aims to help avoid the pitfalls and make buying your first home as painless as possible.”


Hedge fund launch from New Star

New Star is launching a hedge fund on May 17th that will invest in convertible bonds and similar instruments. The fund will be listed in Dublin, and will target returns of Libor plus ten percent to Libor plus fifteen percent. It will be available in both dollars and euros, and minimum investment will be $100,000. […]

Extra rooms can add 11% to house prices

Adding a decent-sized bedroom or bathroom to a property can lift its value by up to 11 per cent, according to Nationwide&#39s What Adds Value? study.Nationwide says salaries and interest rates are the drivers of house prices at a national level but it says many other factors are important in influencing values. It lists additional […]

Failings in FSA split-caps consultation

Professional body the Actuarial Profession says it has identified three main failing in the FSA consultation on split cap investment trusts. The first of the three troublesome areas the Actuarial Profession says it wishes to tackle is the proposal to restrict investment in funds of funds, which it believes will solve problems associated with crossholdings. […]

Standard says new business will fall

Standard Life chief executive Iain Lumsden has admitted the group expects new business to be down at the end of 2003 on 2002. Speaking at the life office&#39s AGM he conceded that sales in Canada, its second biggest market for life and pensions were slow but added that the group expects the majority of future […]

US equities: opportunities for short sellers expand

Optimism is as American as baseball and apple pie. And since the financial crisis, being optimistic about US equities has paid off: they have outperformed every other major developed market by a comfortable margin. Yet while there remain plenty of good reasons to be optimistic about US equities, Stephen Moore, manager of the Artemis US […]


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